Weekly Rochester Events #491 Starting Thursday, June 5, 2008

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Ali Ran in the Corporate Challenge
by Jason Olshefsky at 7:00 pm (add a comment)

I just thought I'd briefly mention that I went to RIT (One Lomb Memorial Dr., campus map) to see Ali run in The JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge this year. She planned on just walking the whole thing but she and some of her coworkers ended up running for a couple miles of it. The food her company catered was really excellent — and they were thoughtful enough to include beer and wine.

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Friday, May 30th, 2008

Make Way for Tomorrow at the Dryden
by Jason Olshefsky at 8:00 pm (add a comment)

I went to the Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) to see Make Way for Tomorrow. Tamara Jenkins gave a brief introduction after Jim Healy — the film was influential when she was writing her own film, The Savages. I liked her breezy, run-on way of talking and identified with "guilty writer syndrome" where rather than writing the script for The Savages, she took a break to see Tôkyô monogatari (Tokyo Story) at a local film house, as it's on many "must-see" lists, particularly for filmmakers.

So upon watching it, she discovered it was based on a film from the 1930's: Make Way for Tomorrow (which, in turn, is based on a play and book). She and her husband sought to find a copy, and after exhausting film and video sources, they turned to eBay where they bought a VHS copy that was recorded on late-night TV, commercials-and-all. Presumably she got to see a private screening during her visit: she quipped that she has greatly enjoyed Rochester even though she's only seen it from the interior of the Dryden Theatre: she spent her time watching movies from the Eastman House archive.

Anyway, Make Way for Tomorrow was the saddest movie I ever saw. It starts out with a family of adult siblings being called to their parents' home. Their father explains that he failed to pay the mortgage and the house is being lost to foreclosure. His kids are relieved to find they have 6 months to vacate, but when they ask, he admits that the 6 months runs out in just a few days. The siblings try to accommodate their parents but all of them also try to maintain their own lives as if there were no disruption.

It's clear that all the parents (Bart and Lucy) want is to be together, but they have no means to do so on their own. Initially they're housed just a few hundred miles away on the East coast so they write letters to one another and rarely call (I guess they didn't have unlimited long distance). The siblings make a ditch effort to house their parents in the much more temperate climate of California with their sister. But when they find she is only willing to take care of Bart, they elect to put Lucy into a nursing home and send Bart alone.

The siblings are welcome their parents' meager request to spend one last day together. They spend it around New York — Bart still trying to find work to make ends meet. In lieu of dining with their children, they visit the hotel where they had their honeymoon and are welcomed by the staff. But alas, Bart's train is to leave and they get to the train station to say goodbye.

Just before Bart boards, he turns back to Lucy and says [pardon my paraphrasing], "and just in case there's a wreck or anything happens and I don't see you again, I just wanted to say that the last 50 years with you have been the best I could ever hope for." Lucy reciprocates — and it's abundantly clear that they will not ever see one another again.

I tried to explain the film to Ali when I got home but I broke down telling her about the last scenes. It's really unbelievable and deserves to be seen by many more people.

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Saturday, May 31st, 2008

The Savages at the Dryden
by Jason Olshefsky at 8:00 pm (add a comment)

Tamara Jenkins' The Savages played at the Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) and Ali and I went to see it. They also screened one of her short films from film school, Family Remains. It had a very stylized veneer and told the tale of a mother and daughter who need to confront the death of the divorced husband. It was generally pretty good, but obviously less skillfully made than Jenkins' later work.

The Savages was an excellent film as in its own right. It tells the tale of two siblings, Jon and Wendy, reunited when their father is diagnosed with dementia. They put him in a nursing home near where Jon lives in Buffalo and end up learning a lot about one another's lives in the process.

I was disappointed to that some scenes felt contrived — although Ali disagrees and enjoyed the organic serendipity of it. In one case, it's important for Wendy to meet with Howard, one of the caretakers at the nursing home. She had brought her cat from New York and is allowed to let it stay at the nursing home. I thought it contrived that the cat gets in a fight with another cat at the home, so when Wendy goes to get it, she and Howard end up cornering it under a couch which and end up having a conversation one-on-one.

In all, though, that's a minor fault. One of the best things about the film is that Laura Linney as Wendy and Philip Seymour Hoffman as Jon are both excellent leads. To be completely honest, though, the movie is stolen by a perfectly invisible performance by Philip Bosco as their dad, Lenny.

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Wednesday, June 4th, 2008

Just War
by Jason Olshefsky at 4:04 am (1 comment)

I woke up in the middle of the night, and as often happens, the demons in my head took hold and won't let me get back to sleep. This time it's that I'm trying to reconcile killing someone for my own convenience.

The United States is at war with Iraq. What that means is that there are people sent by the U.S. who are encouraged by us to stay. There are a lot of people in Iraq, on the other hand, who want those people to leave. We sent our people there with all sorts of weapons so they can kill the people who want us to leave — and likewise, the people who want us to leave try to kill the people who we sent.

This will continue until our President shakes hands with somebody and people sign some papers and then the people we sent will come back home.

So switching to the concrete, there is someone in Iraq right now whose direct relative has been killed by an American. That is, there is someone whose brother, sister, father, mother, husband, wife, son, or daughter has been killed by an American.

There is no way anyone can convince me that this is a good thing.

The reason that person was killed is because the U.S. sent someone there who killed them. If that American were never there, then that person would not have been killed.

I pay my taxes and I will continue to do so. If I don't, I'll go to jail. My life will be disrupted in an unfavorable way, but there is pretty much no risk that I'll die if I don't pay.

However, those taxes have been used to fund the war. If I had not spent that money, perhaps there would be one person who didn't go to Iraq. And because they wouldn't have been there, then some person in Iraq wouldn't be dead tonight. And their living relative would not have to experience the unbearable loss of their kin.

That's the nature of the faulty logic of my sleepless mind.

However what keeps me from going back to sleep is that someone is dead — and more importantly that someone is being killed right now, and tomorrow it will happen again. And again and again.

Think about the person you love the most in the whole world right now.

Now bang: they're dead.

Somewhere there's a person who knew this was going to happen. What he did to stop it was to write a couple letters to people telling them he thought it would be a bad idea. But he also sent those people money — a lot of money — knowing full-well that they intended to use it to kill your loved-one. To be completely fair, that person would have his life disrupted — he'd go to jail if he didn't pay the money.

So on the one hand, you've got the corpse of your loved-one. And on the other, you've got someone who wasn't willing to spend a couple years in prison to stop it. Both are cases of lost years, but in one case it's the absolute remainder of one's life and in the other, a few years of my life.

I can't figure out the morality of the whole thing, but I sure feel terrible that someone's loved-one is dead because I didn't want to stop it.

Now maybe I can shrug and go back to sleep.

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JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Dobro pozhalovat, ili postoronnim vkhod vospreshchyon (Welcome, Or No Trespassing) starting earlier-than-usual at 7 p.m. to make room for the second feature, Pokhozhdeniya zubnogo vracha (Adventures of a Dentist), starting at 8:30 p.m. I think the Eastman House calendar does a great job explaining: "both of these wonderful satires by Klimov were initially repressed in the USSR. In the subversive Welcome, or No Trespassing, a pre-teen hero is expelled from summer camp. When he sneaks back in, the other children hide him. In Dentist, a talented dentist who can extract teeth without any pain is tormented by jealous colleagues." [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

The rocking rockabilly of Krypton 88MySpace link will be at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (99 Court St.) starting around 10 p.m. [source: Dinosaur Bar-B-Que calendar]

Drinking Liberally meets at 8 p.m. tonight at Monty's Korner (355 East Ave.) [source: RocWiki calendar]

JayceLand Pick Today is the first day of the Annual Garage Sale of The Upper Mount Hope Neighborhood Association. My own sale — at Jayce's House (45 Whiteford Rd.) — will start on Saturday in ... the morning, I guess. [source: Upper Mount Hope Neighborhood Association flyer] [all ages]

Tonight from 4:30 p.m. to 11 p.m., tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. is Fairport Canal Days (Main St., Fairport). [source: Rochester Music Coalition calendar]

Tonight is another First Fridays around art galleries downtown starting around 5 p.m. [source: First Friday website]

This evening at 5:30 p.m. at The Arts and Cultural Council for Greater Rochester (277 N. Goodman St.) is a discussion led by Denise Logan whose works The Art of Jazz: Illustrations and Paintings are on display at the Council's gallery. [source: Arts and Cultural Council website]

Bodhi's Cafe & LoungeMySpace link (274 Goodman St. N., in Village Gate) will be hosting Mike Fyler and The Macro MeltdownMySpace link starting around 6 p.m. and then Madeline ForsterMySpace link at 8 p.m. [source: Bodhi's Cafe MySpace page]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at 6 p.m. is the opening reception for 6x6x2008 at The Rochester Contemporary Art Gallery (137 East Ave.) (unfortunately also coinciding with the East End Fest, so artwork sales begin tomorrow night). Bradley Butler's The Future Consequences of Neglect also opens in the Lab Space there. [source: Rochester Contemporary calendar] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at the Swan Street Stage at The East End Fest (East Ave. at Scio St.) at 6 p.m. is a performance by clever, choreographed dancing (and some surf-rock) from The IsotopesMySpace link. As their press release states, "in what can only be considered a major oversight by the event organizers, a real band has been booked to perform at this weekend's East End Fest." [source: band e-mail]

Tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Genesee Pottery at The Genesee Center for the Arts (713 Monroe Ave.) is the opening reception for Primary featuring works by studio manager Chea Peng. The work will be on display until June 27. [source: Genesee Center for the Arts calendar]

JayceLand Pick The Moon SeedsMySpace link, and LouLou and the Sharp SwordMySpace link will be at Boulder Coffee Co.MySpace link (100 Alexander St.) starting around 8 p.m. [source: Boulder Coffee MySpace site] [all ages]

Top Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing The Silent Partner starting at 8 p.m. in which a bank clerk finds out about an upcoming hold-up and stashes money for his own — only to be chased by the thief. Preceded by Begone Dull Care. [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

Tonight and tomorrow at The High Falls Gorge (Platt St at Browns Race, the Pont De Rennes Bridge) starting around 9:30 p.m. is the River of Light Laser Show. [source: City Hall press release]

The Secret StashMySpace link will be at The Mez (389 Gregory St., formerly House of Hamez and Daily Perks) starting around 8 p.m. [source: Mez website] [all ages]

Tonight at Boulder Coffee Co.MySpace link (100 Alexander St.) is The Josh Dion BandMySpace link, and The Nowlin-Mulholland QuintetMySpace link starting around 8 p.m. [source: Boulder Coffee MySpace site] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Let's Get Lost starting at 8 p.m. All about the music and fascinating life of Chet Baker. [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) is Dirty on PurposeMySpace link, and Mass Solo RevoltMySpace link starting around 9 p.m. [source: Croquet Shows e-mail]

Over at The Flat Iron CaféMySpace link (561 State St.) starting around 9 p.m. is The Dan Drohan Quartet, then later it's the After Hours Jam Session with The Quinn Lawrence TrioMySpace link. [source: Flat Iron Cafe webstie]

Tonight at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (99 Court St.) is Turnip StampedeMySpace link starting around 10 p.m. [source: Dinosaur Bar-B-Que calendar]

High FidelityMySpace link (170 East Ave., formerly Milestones) will be hosting fun ska from Mrs. Skannotto, Roots ColliderMySpace link, and very good jazzy-instrumental 3-piec, DojaMySpace link starting around 10:30 p.m. [source: JamBase calendar for Rochester]

Betty's Sing-a-Long is regularly scheduled at Betty Meyer's Bullwinkle Café (622 Lake Ave., a.k.a. "Bullwinkle's") starting around 10 but since September, 2007 people have reported they were closed.

Today at Washington Square Park (Woodbury Blvd at South Clinton Ave, across from Geva Theatre) is the 2008 Dachsund Parade starting at 11:15 a.m. Join other folks from MEETinROCHESTERMySpace link or just stop by. [source: MEETinROCHESTER calendar]

Today at 1 p.m. in the Dryden Theatre at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) is a screening of The Muslims I Know by Mara Ahmed. [source: Rochester Film Lab Yahoo! Group]

There's a Blood Drive for The American Red Cross at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) today from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. [source: Eastman House calendar] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Ascenseur pour l'echafaud (Elevator to the Gallows) starting at 7 p.m., preceded by Jammin' the Blues. Just after committing the perfect murder, the murderer gets stuck in an elevator. I generally liked it when I saw it in 2006. [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick CPC GangbangsMySpace link, ChyldeMySpace link, and Triglactagon will be at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) starting around 9 p.m. [source: A|V Space website]

Tonight at The Mez (389 Gregory St., formerly House of Hamez and Daily Perks) is Baby Gramps starting around 8 p.m. [source: Mez website] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick Over at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) starting around 9 p.m. is WalriMySpace link, The Evicted, and Man vs. MoonMySpace link. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

Bored? Why not check out 1980's DJ night at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) starting around 11 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

This morning at 7:30 a.m. in the cafeteria overlooking the arboretum in Bausch and Lomb (140 Stone St.) is the Artists Breakfast Group meeting ... anyone interested in art or creativity is invited.

Today from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. is a workshop in the Gleason Auditorium at The Rochester Public Library (115 South Ave.) with the redundant title of Managing Cash Flow for Small Business Success. [source: Rochester Public Library calendar]

Today at 6 p.m. in Cobb's Hill Park (Norton Dr., softball diamonds near 490) is a Trees in Our Neighborhoods Walk — check out MEETinROCHESTERMySpace link for details. [source: MEETinROCHESTER calendar]

Boulder Coffee Co.MySpace link (100 Alexander St.) will be hosting DubblestuffGarageBand linkMySpace link starting around 8 p.m. [source: Boulder Coffee MySpace site] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Pretty Poison starting at 8 p.m. It's a black comedy in which a former mental-hospital patient tries to attract a high-school girl, not realizing she's an FBI agent. [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) will be hosting The Apostles Of The Hidden SonGarageBand linkMySpace link, The Midnight Ghost TrainMySpace link, and ChyldeMySpace link starting around 9 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que (99 Court St.) will be hosting The Po' Boys Brass BandMySpace link starting around 10 p.m. [source: Dinosaur Bar-B-Que calendar]

JayceLand Pick The Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) will be showing Opening Night starting at 8 p.m. — a John Cassavetes film sort-of about an actress who has emotional difficulties while rehearsing for a play. [source: Dryden Theater calendar] [all ages]

JayceLand Pick Tonight at The Bug Jar (219 Monroe Ave.) is rock-and-roll Long LakeMySpace link, The DeliciousMySpace link, and tight modern rock band VeluxeMySpace link starting around 9 p.m. [source: Bug Jar calendar]

Poor People United meets tonight and every Wednesday at 7 at St. Joseph's House of Hospitality (402 South Ave.) [source: the proverbial grapevine]

Every Wednesday starting at Dogtown Hots (691 Monroe Ave.) at 7 p.m. is the Rochester Cruisers Wednesday Night Cruise (for bicyclists). [source: the proverbial grapevine]

There's an Open Mic for Acoustic Music at Boulder Coffee Co. (100 Alexander St.) tonight around 8. [source: the proverbial grapevine]

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This page is Jason Olshefsky's list of things to do in Rochester, NY and the surrounding region (including nearby towns Irondequoit, Webster, Penfield, Pittsford, Victor, Henrietta, Gates, Chili, Greece, and Charlotte, and occasionally other places in Monroe County and the Western New York region.) It is updated every week with daily listings for entertainment, activities, performances, movies, music, bands, comedy, improv, poetry, storytelling, lectures, discussions, debates, theater, plays, and generally fun things to do. Music events are usually original bands with occasional cover bands and DJ's with musical styles including punk, emo, ska, swing, rock, rock-and-roll, alternative, metal, jazz, blues, noise band, experimental music, folk, acoustic, and "world-beat." Events listed take place during the day, in the evenings, or as part of the city's nightlife as listed. Although I'm reluctant to admit it, it is a Rochester blog and I'm essentially blogging about Rochester events. I also tend to express opinions, review past events, make reviews, speak of philosophy or of a philosophical nature, discuss humanity and creativity. Oh, and it's spelled JayceLand with no space and a capital L, not Jayce Land, Jaycee Land, Jace Land, Jase Land, Joyce Land, Jayce World, Jayceeland, Jaceland, Jaseland, Joyceland, Jayceworld, Jayceeworld, Jaceworld, Jaseworld, nor Joyceworld. (Now if you misspell it in some search engine, you at least get a shot at finding it.) It's also not to be confused with Jake's World or JakesWorld which is a site of a Rochester animator. While I'm on the topic of keywords for search engines, this update includes information for Thursday, June 5, 2008 (Thu, Jun 5, 2008, 6/5/2008, or 6/5/08) Friday, June 6, 2008 (Fri, Jun 6, 2008, 6/6/2008, or 6/6/08) Saturday, June 7, 2008 (Sat, Jun 7, 2008, 6/7/2008, or 6/7/08) Sunday, June 8, 2008 (Sun, Jun 8, 2008, 6/8/2008, or 6/8/08) Monday, June 9, 2008 (Mon, Jun 9, 2008, 6/9/2008, or 6/9/08) Tuesday, June 10, 2008 (Tue, Jun 10, 2008, 6/10/2008, or 6/10/08) and Wednesday, June 11, 2008 (Wed, Jun 11, 2008, 6/11/2008, or 6/11/08).

JayceLand Pick indicates an event that's a preferred pick of the day ... probably something worth checking out.

Top Pick indicates a "guaranteed" best bet for the particular genre of the indicated event.

GarageBand link links to a band's page on GarageBand.com which offers reviews and information about bands.

MySpace link links to a band's page on MySpace.com which is a friend-networking site that is popular with bands.

Fly the flag today. is a day when you should fly the flag according to the Veterans of Foreign Wars calendar.

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